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Costa Rica Import Regs.: Sanitary/Phyto-Sanitary

Questions and answers about prohibited imports, labeling requirements, customs valuation as well as tariffs & taxes of Costa Rica.

Costa Rica Import Regs.: Sanitary/Phyto-Sanitary

Postby bridgat » Tue Nov 18, 2008 5:03 am

In 2006, Costa Rica issued Executive Decree No. 32994-MAG on Regulations Governing the Organizational Structure of the SFE. The document determines the SFE's organizational structure in order to ensure that the functions assigned to it by Phytosanitary Protection Law No. 7664, international agreements and other related laws are fulfilled. The General Law governing the SENASA is No. 8495 of 16 May 2006, which regulates the protection of animal health, veterinary public health and the operation of the SENASA.

Sanitary and phytosanitary inspection is carried out at the border and at other sites designated by the Ministry of Agriculture. All products of plant or animal origin that require sanitary or phytosanitary authorization must be inspected, so there are no random inspections.

The cost of conformity assessment and inspection, as well as that of other technical services and laboratory analyses, including inspection visits, is paid according to scales established by an executive decree issued by the Ministry of Agriculture through the SENASA and the SFE.

Risk analysis is mainly carried out by the SFE. The risk analysis procedure may be initiated by the Ministry of Agriculture through the SENASA and the SFE or at the request of the private sector.

All plant products and by-products of plant origin require prior import authorization, as provided in Article 51 of Law No. 7664 on phytosanitary protection. By-products that undergo such a high level of processing that they do not entail any phytosanitary risk are not subject to this requirement. The interested party must submit a written application for each import to the one-stop office at the Ministry of Foreign Trade using the customs clearance authorization form
(Formulario de Autorización de Desalmacenaje – FAD). Applications for phytosanitary permits to import wild flora must also be approved by the Ministry of the Environment. Importers of plant products or by-products used to prepare animal concentrates must be listed in the SENASA Animal Feed Register. Prior phytosanitary import authorization is valid for 30 days.
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